Today, I am going to share a very simple stir fry recipe with you. It is made with banana blossom/ banana flower. I saw it for the first time when I came to live in the South of India. This dark purplish vegetable looks quite intimidating and I would have never tried cooking with it. But my mum-in-law cooks with it. She showed me how to clean the flower which is the most laborious part. The cooking is actually very simple. Each flower has a hard stem-like thing as well as a plastic casing that must be pulled out. Here is a good guide to clean the banana blossom. Once you have them cleaned, soak in water. Then throw away that water. Between you and me, if I don’t have the time, I just leave the stems in. They are easy to pull out while eating. Not a purist way but I do it when I am short on time.
This flower has a unique kasela taste. It is astringent and pungent. Once you have done the cleaning, this stir fry is ready in a jiffy.
Flowers of one banana blossom
1 small onion chopped finely
2-3 green chillies split in half
Oil for tempering
1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
1/4 tsp. cumin seeds
1/2 tsp. Amchur powder
Salt to taste
Heat oil in a kadhai. Add in the mustard seeds and allow them to sputter. Now tip in the cumin seeds. Sputter. Add the green chillies and onions and fry for a couple of minutes. Now add the banana blossoms and some salt. Stir well. Cover and cook on low heat for about 5 minutes or till the flowers are tender. It does not take very long. Now add in the amchur powder. Cook for a minute more. Taste and adjust salt.
Serve it hot with roti. Simple and nice. The taste is a little different than your usual stir fries. The amchur takes away the bitterness. Banana blossom is very high in Vitamin A, C, E, Potassium and fiber. It also increases progesterone and is considered a good lactating agent. Its consumption is good for women. It increases hemoglobin in the body. It is a very healthy vegetable and can be used in curries. Do try it out.